Donald Trump’s recent visit to Mexico, widely seen in the country as a humiliation, claimed a high-profile political victim on Wednesday with the resignation of Finance Minister Luis Videgaray, President Enrique Peña Nieto’s closest adviser.
Mr. Videgaray, who played a key role in helping orchestrate the Trump trip, was succeeded by José Antonio Meade, the country’s social development minister and former finance chief, Mr. Peña Nieto told a news conference.
When I first heard that Peña Nieto’s had invited both Hillary and The Donald, I imagined that Enrique expected two no-shows. Now I can imagine a conversation in the likes of,
Luis: Let’s get Hillary here so you and her can beat up Trump on immigration.
Enrique: Great idea!
where neither Luis nor Enrique took into account that a. Hillary’s not placing herself into any situation she can not control, b. she’s better off running out the clock until election day, and c. no [Clinton Foundation donation] money, no honey.
But enough daydreaming.
Videgaray’s resignation is not good news, as
The former investment banker was widely seen as the brains behind the Mexican president and the driving force behind a series of high-profile overhauls in the past few years, including opening Mexico’s closed oil industry to private investment for the first time since 1938.
On his first full day in office, Mexico’s new finance minister, José Antonio Meade, has the task of presenting Congress with a budget proposal for 2017 that will slash government spending to confront further declines in oil revenue and rein in growing public debt.
Over at the WaPo Aaron Blake writes about Trump’s reply to Matt Lauer’s question in last night’s foreign policy forum,
MATT LAUER: When you’re commander-in-chief, you can spark a conflict, you can destabilize a region, you can put American lives at risk. Can we afford to take that risk with you?
Trump replied with a non-sequitur,
TRUMP: Well, I think absolutely. I think if you saw what happened in Mexico the other day, where I went there, I had great relationships, everything else. I let them know where the United States stands. I mean, we’ve been badly hurt by Mexico, both on the border and with taking all of our jobs or a big percentage of our jobs.
And if you look at what happened, look at the aftermath today, where the people that arranged the trip in Mexico have been forced out of government. That’s how well we did.
Mostly, though, it’s an odd claim because Trump insinuates very clearly that his goal was to shake up the Mexican government.
Maybe, maybe not. We’ll never know because Lauer didn’t press on the point and went on with other questions on his list.
Cross-posted at WoW! Magazine.